It’s time to forget any functional, less than luxurious ideas you may have about canal barges and instead embrace the elegance and indulgence of a European Waterways luxury hotel barge cruise. European Waterways are proud to be the only company offering luxury slow-paced barge cruises around Europe’s hidden inland waterways. The difference with a European Waterways cruise is that through many years of experience they have refined their cruise holidays into unique travel indulgences with the very best cuisine, fine wines, cultural tours and historical encounters, allowing their guests to explore hidden gems throughout Europe. If you’re looking to enjoy a leisurely pace in the utmost comfort and luxury, one of their cruises will be right up your street, or should I say canal!
If you envisage a canal barge as having multiple hard wooden bunk beds and a perfunctory galley kitchen and so on, then think again! The European Waterways fleet features heated on-deck spa pools, so you can sit back and relax while the picturesque scenery goes by, as well as alfresco dining areas and comfortable saloons to recline and socialise in. Their comfortable guest cabins, with twin or double beds, feature en-suite bathrooms with showers and all the usual amenities you would expect from your standard hotel. To be honest, their vessels are really more like small floating boutique hotels that enjoy a different view every day.
The more than comfortable surroundings are complimented by delicious gourmet meals prepared by your very own on-board chef as well as a good selection of regional fine wines and an open bar that are all included in your cruise. All the European Waterways cruises benefit from a small and intimate number of guests (between 6 to 20), allowing each cruise to take on more of a friendly, sociable atmosphere.
Whether you choose a cruise around Burgundy, the Loire Valley or Bordeaux or you wish to explore the waterways of Italy, the Benelux, Germany or Holland or even the canals right here in the UK, your experienced crew will ensure you fully immerse yourself in the gastronomy, culture and history of your chosen region. Whilst onboard you can enjoy daily “off the beaten track” excursions to wineries, castles, markets, charming hilltop villages and even to watch local craftsmen at work. Also included in your cruise are local transfers and the use of all the barge facilities – even including bicycles to explore the local towpaths. All of this, combined with a few hours of sedate cruising each day through some of Europe’s most beautiful scenery, makes a European Waterways hotel barge cruise a truly unique experience.